Simple Ball, Simple Faith

Jun 30, 2022 | Sports Friends Africa, Sports Friends Malawi

Coach Frackson is from the central region of Malawi. After his Basic Training with Sports Friends four years ago, he returned home equipped for sports ministry with a passion to introduce young people to Christ. 

Coach Frackson had limited resources and had recently moved to this village to live with his brother, who was a schoolteacher. Because Coach Frackson did not own a soccer ball and could not afford to buy one, he made a ball with bits of rubbish: plastic bags and string woven into netting to hold the shape. The odd soccer ball attracted curious young people who proceeded to join in the fun. However, others were put off by the foolish makeshift ball and refused to participate. 

Above: Coach Frackson with one of his homemade balls

The humble coach remained confident, though. He continued to serve the God who uses the foolish things of this world to shame the wise. He refused to be discouraged by the scorn he encountered (1 Corinthians 4:12-13). He continued to gather with his team, and they all began to bring small donations to contribute toward buying an official ball. Soon, they had enough money to purchase two soccer balls, and proudly invited more youth to join their team.

Many young people trusted Christ as a result! 

As the number of new followers of Jesus began to grow, the youth wanted to begin attending church in addition to their team gatherings. Coach Frackson was still attending the church where he used to live which was a 6km walk away, so the team asked if they could start meeting as a church right there in their own town! Coach Frackson spoke with the elders at his home church, who agreed to plant a church in this new village so the young soccer players could receive further Bible teaching and Christian fellowship. The church still continues to grow in number as more people keep coming to play soccer and join the church! 

We thank God for His faithfulness in drawing people to Himself. We also thank our partners in the gospel, who are praying all around the world for more Malawian youth to surrender their lives to Christ.

Who could imagine that a humble coach with a makeshift soccer ball would be the seed that planted a church to bear witness to the presence and love of God in its village? Our God is mighty, able, and willing to take the smallest kernels of faith and multiply them into something amazing.

Will you join us in training and equipping more coaches like Frackson to bear witness to the presence and love of God in their communities? A gift of $75 allows one coach to attend our Basic Training, just like Coach Frackson did. A gift of $1,500 trains and equips 20 coaches who can in turn reach out to dozens of young people all around the world.

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Thank you!